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Boeing's Dreamliner makes maiden flight

After a three-year delay, Boeing's Dreamliner has finally completed its maiden commercial voyage.

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All Nippon Airways (ANA) ground crew wave goodbye to the company's first commercial flight of a Boeing 787 Dreamliner on its departure for Hong Kong on October 26, 2011 at Narita Airport in Chiba prefecture, suburban Tokyo. (KAZUHIRO NOGI/AFP/Getty Images)

After a three-year delay, Boeing's 787 Dreamliner has finally completed its maiden commercial flight.

The Breaking Travel News website reported that All Nippon Airways (ANA) launched Dreamliner's first commercial flight, from Tokyo to Hong Kong on Wednesday.

As passengers boarded the plane in Tokyo, they were handed glasses of celebratory sake broken from a barrel by ANA's chief, Shinichiro Ito, and Boeing vice-president, Scott Fancher.

The project had been scheduled for delivery in 2008, but was struck by a series of setbacks – including an onboard fire during test flights last November.

Read more on GlobalPost: Boeing finally delivers first 787 Dreamliner to Japan's ANA

Dreamliner's maiden voyage was a special charter, and normal services are expected to begin in November.

According to the BBC, Boeing says the “twin-aisle, mid-size plane” has the largest windows in the industry. Boeing also says Dreamliner has higher cabin humidity and cleaner air.

The BBC reports:

"Because of the materials used in construction – carbon fibre rather than aluminum as well as new engines and aerodynamics, Boeing says the Dreamliner is about 20 percent more fuel efficient than similarly-sized models flying today."

It is understood that Boeing plans to make ten of the planes a month from 2013.

Breaking Travel News said that rival Airbus has stepped up manufacturing of the A350 aircraft, opening a new base in Wales, Britain.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/japan/111026/dreamliner-maiden-commercial-flight-tokyo